True things the assistant has said (davesecretary)

“She sounds hot.” – Russell

“I am afraid to talk to my grandmother… my voice shakes when I talk to my grandmother.”

“I cannot wear contact lenses because I have bumps on my eyeballs.”

“I have a keychain collection. My favorite keychain is from peru.”

(When i asked her why her hand was all bandaged up):
“Oh i sprained my wrist… it just happens every three months.”

(When offered a piece of cake from a co-worker)
“I want to eat it but i can’t eat it. I can’t eat it because I am going home soon. If i bring cake home I won’t be the one to eat it. I have a real sweet tooth.”

“I live in an illegal apartment.”

“It took me 45 minutes to get here this morning, I had to take two busses.”
(She lives about a 4 minute walk from this building)

“The day I quit smoking I came home and there were 10 people smoking in my living room. I just couldn’t afford it.”

(Her second day here, I come in around 9:45am)
Her: You weren’t here at 8am
Me: No
Her: You weren’t here at 8:30am
Me: No
Her: You weren’t here at 9:00am
Me: No
Her: You weren’t here at 9:30am
Me: No
Her: So what time do you get in? eleven?

(parody with dinosaur comics made by someone on the message board)

Her (looking at brand new calculator still in shrink-wrapped box): how do you know if that’s even going to turn on?

More of a short story:

This one day she came in really early because she needed to go home at 3pm. Every 5-10 minutes I swear to god she said something about how she needed to go home at 3. At 2:45 she said something about how she needed to go home at 3. At 2:50 she said something about how she needed to go home at 3. at 2:55 she stopped talking. By 3:10 I had totally forgotten about the whole thing.

5 o’clock comes around and she suddenly whips around and yells out WHAT TIME IS IT

I say “5 o’clock”

Then she goes OHHHHHHHHHHH MY GODDDDDDDDDDDDDDD like the world is coming to an end and she looks at her watch and she says MY WATCH BROKE and puts on her coat and rushes out

her (laughing hysterically): look at this date! 10/11/05 – i can’t tell if this is october or november!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Her: “Yeah, I’ve worked in that building FOUR TIMES. (She yelled ‘FOUR TIMES’ for some reason). The last time I worked with this really crazy lady. She was like 90 years old, and she use to flash people, and she was really crazy and half-deaf and blind and she would yell and cry at least once a day. We used to talk together all the time and eat lunch together.”

This is the same assistant. She’s so weird. For the last two weeks every day she’s come in, there has been one more stereotypically ‘retarded’ aspect about her?! Like the first day she had this giant fucking limp she didn’t have during the interview, and the next day she was wearing these crazy orthopedics and then the next day she brought in this giant walkman (walkman, not discman) and those cheap plastic/styrofoam headphones, etc., etc.

Friday she wore a giant red spiderman tshirt that went down to her knees.

There have been a few minor victories in all this. There’s one really retarded woman in my office, and last week I walked in while a coworker was asking my assistant if she was related to said retarded woman. That was pretty amazing. Also she’s taken to zooming across the carpet in her chair ever since she saw me do it once, and anyway this one time she was flying across the carpet and hit a snag or something and flew out of the chair.

She lives really close to this building but busses here because she’s ‘afraid’ of the cold. We had this one really cold day a few weeks back so I guess everyone took the bus rather than walk. As a result, the first bus at her stop was packed full of people and the bus didn’t stop. So she had to wait an extra 15 minutes for the next bus or something, and this wait apparently almost brought her to death’s door.

So she gets on the next bus (which isn’t as packed) and starts on her journey to work. the bus goes RIGHT BY our building, but she decides, (while on the bus), that she’s too cold and can’t wait that long. So she gets off one stop early, which happens to be in front of the building adjacent to us. She goes inside the building next door, and apparently has to ‘warm up’ for AN HOUR

An hour passes, and she decides she’s ready to make the trip to our building. By the way, the building next door is also a government building and CONNECTS TO OUR BUILDING THROUGH FIRST FLOOR. There is a big sign in the lobby of the building next door showing how to get to our building!!!

So she goes outside, walks the 40 feet or whatever to our building, and then bursts into the office in TEARS (I wasn’t around at this point) because she’s nearly ‘frozen to death’.

And I mean I feel bad for people who are stuck in the cold but COME ON!

OH and she spent an entire DAY (7.5 hours) trying to refresh a WEBSITE that was clearly under construction!

Oh yeah, regarding the ‘illegal’ apartment, apparently she also sold her landlord’s appliances because she thought they belonged to the previous tenant, and now, from what I’ve been made to understand, she and ‘her man’ function without stove or fridge.

I video-taped myself eating to prove to two people that I don’t have an eating disorder

(This was said totally out of the blue, and she didn’t even look at anyone, she continued to stare at one of those ‘the enquirer’-type newspapers)

“I asked my dad to go to giant tiger and get me a thing of milk, and he brought me a little loaf of bread instead.”

(quietly resumes reading)

“I forced myself to have a concussion last night in the furnace room.”

I forgot about this one, a few days ago she asked me in front of a whole bunch of people if it was still snowing outside. We were all standing RIGHT NEXT to a big window and there was a very evident BLIZZARD storming outside and tons of snow being hurled through the air everywhere.

A good epilogue to this story is that I told her we should go up to the second floor to meet some other colleagues and she put on her giant coat and hat and mittens like we were about to plunge into the heart of russia. I said “we don’t have to go outside to get upstairs” and she either didn’t hear me or feigned ignorance. So we tramped upstairs via the hallway and the stairwell – both of which don’t have any windows. Said hi to the colleague, and went back down via the same route, where she plummetted into her chair and started breathing laboriously in her crossed-eyed way. Her little space is nowhere near a window either! Then like 10 minutes later a coworker came by, and noticing the assistant all bundled up and out of breath asked her what the weather was like outside. and she said “IT’S REALLY BAD”


She’s super slow, but she is thorough i guess. It’s taking her way too long to do this, though. I can’t wait until her contract is up. Thank god we made it short term in case something like this cropped up.

I think I mentioned one of her tasks is to sort out the correspondence in these folders, and separate them by subject. I told her if she was unclear of the subject, to put it in the back with any other unclear emails and to just sort them chronologically.

Anyway she only reads the first sentence of the email, which is more often than not just a friendly hello or something, and then she decides that the rest of the email must continue on in the same vein. It’s unreal. I definitely had her come into my office holding an email and saying “HE HAS THE FLU. WHERE SHOULD I PUT THIS.” So i read the email and it says “Hi Dave, sorry about the lack of communication, I’ve got the flu. The CRRM conference will most likely be held….” etc.

This happens a LOT.

Oh and a few days ago she told my manager about how at her previous job she worked alongside a very slow and useless woman about her age, and how she (the assistant) was the very spirit of efficiency and how this woman was sluggish and of torpid deportment, etc etc etc.. and she finished this little speech with “AND SO THEY FIRED ME AND KEPT HER, BECAUSE I WAS DOING MY WORK TOO FAST” with this sage little nod like we’d understand.

I should mention the agency that sent potential employees sent me the current assistant, and an angry woman of about 100 years who told me she lost her last job (which she worked at for 38 years) due to chronic absence, as thought it were a thing to be proud of. She then spent the rest of the interview answering all my questions in five words or less, all the while looking absolutely disgusted that she was being interviewed by someone about a fifth of her age.

Man do i wish i had chosen the old woman.

She just sneezed (a sound which would take a thesis to describe) and then layed her head on her desk for two straight minutes while staring into space in that crossed-eye manner of hers.

(In response to me saying wakefield is a good place to go swimming)

“Oh yeah wakefield is really good for swimming. my man went swimming there once and i was standing and i heard BANG BANG and i went running and he had shot a water mover.”

Me – “A what?”

Her – “A SNAKE. a water SNAKE.”

About 20 minutes ago I found out my office is being painted this weekend and that I need to box up some shit, and the assistant suddenly became this horrible authority on painting and starting making these ridiculous claims like “I bet they won’t paint that wall” (pointing wildly at the wall that needs painting the most), etc etc

Also I have to go to this goddamned retreat next week out in the woods and just signed some paper saying a) if I get in an accident I was on “official business” (whatever the hell that means) b) i can be reimbursed on my mileage.. and the main clerk in our division was like, “that’ll probably end up being about $35 if you drive from here” and the assistant was like “THIRTY FIVE DOLLARS!!!!!!!!!”

Also I think I’ve mentioned that ever since she witnessed me slide across the room in my chair, she’s been following my example with alarming tenacity.

Anyway yesterday I noticed she tried her own variant on the means of locomotion, and swivelled the chair around so her back was facing the direction she wished to travel in, and then she started kicking outwards with both legs in this really vicious manner in order to propel herself across the room.

She’s now doing it all the time, and I think her goddamned crab-scuttling is what irritates me more than anything.

She’s gone into a co-workers office to use the phone (The co-worker isn’t there). She’s talking to someone, probably ‘her man’. Anyway:

“Whenever I boil hotdogs they always CURL UP – I don’t know why.”

WHAT THE FUCK?!!?!?!?!?!

“I am tired of my mom calling me ‘shoo-shoo’ or ‘poo-poo’”

She just got her hair caught in one of our big locked cabinets. her hair goes down past her waist, by the way.

She’s reading her tabloids or whatever and starts laughing that horsey laugh of hers

Me: anything funny happen?

Her: it’s just my horoscope from friday. it says to put everything on hold and treat myself for the weekend. i NEVER have anything to do on the weekends!!!! GIVE ME A BREAK!!

She just asked me what ‘taxonomy’ means. i told her i was pretty sure it meant the classification of things, namely plants and animals and shit.

Her: are you sure it doesn’t have to do with taxes?

Me: no, i don’t think so.. let me look it up just to make sure.

Her: (staring at definition) i don’t think that’s what it means.

(a minute of silence passes)

Her: what is ‘computer procedure’

Oh man.

She just talked to me for like fifteen minutes about her father’s inability to fix things without hurting himself.
I wish I could even begin to get this together but there was so much information.

All I remember is that he has apparently shot himself with a nail gun twice.

And “drilled himself in the thigh.”

And then she wrapped it up by saying a trailer will go up in flames really quickly.

I can’t even believe half of this shit is for real.

She’s busted out sunglasses, now that it’s spring.. the lenses are rectangular, and they’re like 2 centimeters tall and about 6 inches wide. They go right off her face but aren’t even tall enough to cover her eyes. I’ve never seen anything like it.

She’s also discarded her giant winter coat (the largest I have EVER seen) and is now sporting this heavy dark green canvas something. It retains its triangular shape when it’s hanging on a coat hanger, but whether it’s starched or what I don’t know. The fabric looks rough, like the underside of a carpet. It looks like it might have been passed down to her from a christmas tree.

Oh and I’m catching her just sort of hanging out in random offices? She always looks super sheepish whenever I see her in someone else’s office. I don’t think she’s stealing anything, but it’s really confusing. She always puts her head down and kind of shuffles out of the room, but never directly.. She always sort of bobs around and takes a few steps in like 3 different directions before heading out. It reminds me of characters in old computer games for some reason.

And whenever she turns directions really quickly her hands sort of pop up in front of her, elbows pinned to her side, like she’s about to start playing piano or something. it’s really really weird and makes her look like she’s a puppet or something.

Oh and she keeps asking people basic questions about the weather when she’s right next to a window!!! Yesterday she asked everyone in the room if it was raining, even though it was super obvious that it wasn’t! And then when someone broke the silence and said “uh.. no?” she turned around and gave him two big thumbs up!!

Holy fucking shit.

Alright so this morning she’s talking about how it’ll cost $2,000.00 to fix her cat, which makes no sense to me, but then again most of her statements directly contradict their immediate predecessor. Anyway then I get this:

Her: Yeah, so my man had a cat and one day he starts a car that he finds and he hears this noise and it turns out his cat is asleep inside the engine. So he takes the cat to the vet and the cat is all mangled up and my man says ‘put it down’ and the vet says ‘no, we can fix this’. Three hundred dollars later my man is driving the cat home, and then he steps out of the car carrying the cat and then A BIRD OR AN EAGLE swoops in and takes the cat out of his hands.

Me: What?

Her: Yeah, and this happened to my mom too.

Me: She got carried off by a bird or an eagle?

Her: No, she was carrying a cat and a BIRD OR AN EAGLE carried the cat off.

Me: Do we even have eagles in southern Ontario?

Her: I don’t think so.

She kept using the phrase ‘a bird or an eagle’. It was ridiculous.

also the part where she mentioned the car her ‘man’ ‘found’

and what sort of horribly mangled cat only costs $300 to fix up?

NOTHING makes any sense

Oh and some woman made fudge for everyone today and I drop by and there are about a dozen people eating it in the main office and the assistant limps in and grabs a little piece, takes and bite and says “Wow for homemade fudge this is pretty good!”

Which baffled the hell out of everyone.

And then like 5 hours later she’s still got that piece of fudge with a bite mark in it on the corner of her desk.


And since it’s easter weekend coming up, someone came in and was like “long weekend! alright!” and then she says “I’ve been waiting three years for this holiday” without looking up.

“This weekend I need to buy some chocolate in the shape of a horse.”

Oh shit.

So she basically came running into my office saying “SNO-PAY!!! SNO-PAY!!!” and I thought she was trying to say ‘snow day’ but then she said “DO YOU HAVE SNO-PAY!!” so I was back to square one.

Naturally I asked “what is sno pay” and then she calmed down enough to pronounce it “snow paint.”

Turns out she wanted white-out.

Holy god.

So part of my job involves keeping tabs on scientists and making sure they’re using our money to figure out global warming instead of buying hookers and blow.

So anyway a lot of times they’ll just get their accountants or whatever to send me copies of all the receipts they incurred while in the field.

Anyway since she’s organizing all this she gets to look over these receipts. About 10 minutes ago she came in all flustered and started going on about how she “couldn’t believe her eyes” over some of these receipts. At one point she said “And my god! this guy is buying all top of the line stuff!! Saltines….. CLAMATO… I don’t see no no-name brand stuff nowhere!!”

She just referred to hail as ‘stingers’

Man she just talked for like 20 straight minutes.

She said she was in a play for Charlotte’s Web, and when I asked her what character she played she said “farrago.” It’s been a while since I read the book but I totally don’t remember a “farrago.” I actually replied with “the rat?” before I realized how mean that sounds.

She’s talking about she got audited the first year she did taxes because she said she owned multiple properties when in truth she owns nothing.

She just said she has trouble with percentages, and then as her example she said “like if they ask me ‘what’s 40% of 100?’” and then she did that thing where you run the palm of your hand over your head to imply that the subject is over your head, only she kind of did it incorrectly and looked like the Fonz when he’s combing his hair and trying to look cool.

A colleague just came in and commented on the shitty weather outside and how much slush there is on the ground and she basically yelled out “oh the slush i don’t mind.. BUT THOSE STINGERS!!!”

I know I already brought up the stingers. I don’t care.

She doesn’t like McDonalds because everytime she asks for a big mac they try to give her a milk shake.

Her explanation is that she thinks the term ‘big mac’ is only used at the McDonalds in Ottawa, and she asked for one at a McDonalds outside of the city, where, presumably, the lexicon is different.
By the way she’s got a really weird accent/lisp/speech impediment and when she first said big mac I thought she was talking about a milk shake as well.

She has an accent and it would have to be French. But she also sort has the stereotypical “retard-sounding” voice.. kind of snivelling and sulky.. a lot of “m” sounding words that force you to purse your lips together.. so instead of “it’s a nice day” it would sound like “mits a mice daym.”

And it isn’t really a lisp: more of an anti-lisp, actually.. Whenever we get around to any sort of sibilance there’s this ghostly echo-y silence instead of a whistle or marked ‘sh’ sound, which leads me to think her sinus cavities are ruptured. Like if you put your mouth in a position where you’re about to make an exaggerated long ‘o’ sound, and then touch your tongue to the roof of your mouth and suck air in, it’s that kind of sound during the ‘s’s’. I use to have this table from a linguistics class I took that had the names for all of this but have since lost it.

Milkshake and big mac don’t sound anything alike – true. I think they sounded similar to me because your brain tries to pick out any word that will fit the sentence.. when she says big mac is sort of sounds like “biii mig”.. picture a fat sobbing french child trying to say “big mac” through his blubberings and you’ll get the idea. And then if you stick that sound into a sentence involving McDonalds I think you automatically lock on to “milk” and from there “milkshake.”

I’m still thinking about this actually.

She didn’t have ANY of this during the interview. I remember her being totally rational. And then like for 2 straight weeks every single day she came in there was a brand new stereotypical “retarded” aspect about her. It started with that wonky limp of hers and then the glasses and then the XXXXL spiderman t-shirts and then the giant boots and then the fanny pack and then the lispy-accent and then the cross-eyed-ness etc etc etc

It was the most awful transformation I have ever seen.

She has been trying to learn hearts for 3 months and still doesn’t have the hang of it.

She just said her grandmother lives in a place that is not on the map.

I think she means in a town/village so small it would not be marked on most maps.

“I have a 40 centimeter.. no.. 40 foot race car toy that I got for my niece.”

Alright you know how in the news yesterday there were a bunch of articles about that vet who got his arm bitten off by that crocodile, accompanied with a lot of graphic pictures a croc with a severed arm in its mouth?

Anyway of course there was a big picture of this in her tabloids today and she was staring right at it. And someone walked by and looked at it and said something like “pretty crazy picture, huh?” and then put some food in the microwave. And then she kept staring at it for about a minute straight and then the microwave made a little ding sound and she stiffened up like pavlov’s retarded dog and said “WOW!!! I DIDN’T EVEN SEE THE ARM!!!!”

She didn’t bring in her giant glasses so apparently she can’t work today or something?!

What the hell?! She was working this morning.

She’s wandering around looking for a copy of the yellow pages right now. I’m interested to see how this turns out.

Right now she’s wearing another one of those giant smoking jackets fabricated out of a material akin to the underside of a carpet. It’s greyish brown and about 10 sizes too big for her.

Underneath the smoking jacket is either a XXXXXXXL t-shirt with some awful print on it, or an XXXXXXL man’s shirt.

She wears the same boots every day and once told me that she has owned said boots for 23 YEARS.

She wears a headband every day with her giant headphones (the cheap plastic kind with big styrofoam circles for your ears) over the headband.

She wears black denim jeans from a decade long since passed. They are tapered at the ankle and are extremely skinny. However, today I noticed she is wearing black pants with extremely thin white vertical stripes running down them. I believe these would go well with the matching suit, provided the man wearing the suit weighed some 400 pounds. On her they look kind of like hammer pants.

She wears a sony walkman that is the size of a fucking cereal box on her belt loop, and has an enormous pair of men’s glasses (the kind your unwitting grampa had), and a dainty tiny pair of men’s glasses (the kind you see on 30-year-old assholes who are still trying to look ‘hip’ with little round lenses) which she switches up.

That’s pretty much it.


Man there’s this locked cabinet near her desk that we’re trying to get unlocked, and I guess a locksmith showed up a few days ago but couldn’t open it up (I wasn’t around for any of this).

So just now I was walking by and this one woman was like “Any news on when that cabinet is going to get unlocked?”

And the assistant was like “Well a man came by with his.. with his.. his bunch of keys… no.. his.. his pack of keys… no… his.. his.. clutch of keys.. no… his.. i’m not sure how to say it…. …. … African American? That’s it! An african american came by with his bunch of keys.”

Oh yeah and we got that cabinet unlocked and the locksmith gave us two working keys. We’ve got this box in the main lobby behind the security desk that has backups of all the keys for pretty much everything on the main floor, in case someone locks themselves out of their office or something.

Anyway I was given the keys and I said something along the lines of “Alright, I’ll keep one of these and put the other one in that box behind the security counter” and she said “I DON’T THINK THAT’S A GOOD IDEA – WHAT IF YOU LOSE THE KEY” and I said “Well then we’ll have the backup that’s behind the security counter” and she said “BUT WHAT IF THAT ONE’S NOT THERE!”

This morning:

Some lady (not in our department) was going on about her dog’s breed and being really ridiculous about it (he’s an eighth husky, an eighth sky terrier, an eighth Dalmatian etc etc etc) and then when she was done listing the lineage of her animal the assistant said “I USED TO HAVE ONE OF THOSE.”

And then my manager started talking about how she’s feeding a stray pregnant cat, and how she used to leave dry food out on her balcony but now the pregnant cat is picky so she buys it wet food.. the assistant was getting really irritable during the whole thing but when my manager mentioned wet cat food she practically yelled out “WET FOOD?!?! OH THAT’S IT – YOU OWN THAT CAT”. It was the angriest I’ve seen her since she got here.

She’s gone in like 12 days!!! hurray!!!!


Some maintenance dude came in and was like “Hi, I just need to check out your windows” and she said “there’s a big huge crack in it” and I was staring right at the window and it’s totally fine – there’s no crack anywhere. And the maintenance dude is staring at the window and he obviously doesn’t get it either so he says “Sorry?” and she says once more “Yeah there’s a big huge crack in it” and then we all stare at the window for another 20 seconds and then she says “OH SORRY I THOUGHT YOU MEANT MY WINDOW AT HOME.”

What i really like about this is that she definitely only said “window” and not “windows” which makes me think there might only be one window in her ‘illegal apartment’.

Man she just started listing everything that’s gone wrong for her in 2007 in this manner: “On the first day of new years i broke my foot. On the second day of new years I stubbed my toe. On the third day of new years I got bitten by a dog.” It was like this horrible reverse retarded 12-days-of-christmas or something.

Whenever she talks about the price of something she always rounds it to a ridiculous degree. As in “yeah that hamburger was $5.40.. almost $5.50. $5.50!!”

She’s been doing that a lot this morning.

She’s gone in like 2 days!!!!

Not much to report, actually. Although someone asked her what her plans were after her last day on Friday, and she said she planned to find a new job by Monday. Then someone asked her if it was usually that easy to find new work, and she said no, and that she was frequently out of work for weeks at a time.

Well, she’s got like a XXXXXL white tshirt today that says “If you have something to say, please raise your hand and cover your mouth.”

I get the feeling she wouldn’t know what a digital camera was, I could just tell her it’s a shiny metal bar of soap that people use to wash robots and she’d probably believe me. She lost her shit when she saw me browsing through google maps looking for hidden swimming pools downtown.

She told me a story today about people getting eaten by bears which I’m pretty sure was a complete lie. The story ended up with these people running away from bears while still holding the fish they had just caught, which is what led to their demise. I asked how the authorities knew that the people had been running with fish before the bears got them and she was visibly rattled. She said “Well there must have been some sort of evidence.”

Dude she is long gone.

I TRIED to get some audio. Seriously. I borrowed my girlfriend’s mp3 player (which can record sound) and stuck my computer microphone into it and left it in my bag and everything recorded just sounds like muffled noise. So it didn’t work.


Ending everything on a really high note, when she was packing things up and about to leave I was like “Alright see you later” and she was like “Yeah maybe I’ll drop by for sure i will” (or something like that) and I was like “uh” and then she threw on that giant burly overcoat of hers and sauntered out of the door and then the very last thing she said was


And disappeared, hopefully forever.

Credit: davesecretary @